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Writing an Effective Outline in MLA Style For a Research Paper


Wednesday, Dec. 1st 2010

Writing an effective outline in MLA style for a research paper serves as the foundation for producing an excellent piece of writing.  Knowledge about appropriate outline is a lifeline for students. Outlines keep research organized and prevent a student from losing his focus from the topic, too.  In case of MLA style research paper writing, one should be aware about the MLA guidelines of writing outlines.

Working outline can be done on rough draft as an informal piece of writing, which shows all major and minor points that a writer want to write in his research paper. In contrast, some teachers demand the submission of a research paper outline prior to detail writing, in this case one should write it according to the MLA format.

Importance of a research paper outline:

Before discussing the procedure about writing an effective outline in MLA style for a research paper, I would like to discuss the significance of an outline.

  • Outline of a research paper is important to organize your efforts of research, writing and proofreading.
  • It gives you a proper plan how deep you should do research and how to arrange collected data.
  • It prevents the hit and miss at the time of final drafting.

Tips for writing an effective outline in MLA style for a research paper:

Now, some tips for writing an effective outline in MLA style for a research paper.

1.    First of all, you should type the word “Thesis” at the left top of the page, which will be followed by a colon, then type your research paper statement in sentence case.

2.    Then, mention all headings or points which you want to discuss in research paper, chronologically.

3.    During writing an effective outline in MLA style for a research paper, you should use Roman numerals (I, II, III, IV, V and others) for main headings. These main headings show the main theme of the paragraph.

4.    Afterwards, denote subdivisions of main headings with capital English alphabets (A, B, C …).These subdivisions mention the supporting points for further explanation of main headings.

5.    It is also possible that you have further subdivisions of these sub-headings, you may mention them by a number (1, 2 …), if needed.

Hopefully, above mentioned tips will help you while writing an effective outline in MLA style for a research paper.

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Posted by Janele Frederick | in Research Papers

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